FanDuel NHL Value Plays: Tuesday (3/7)
This Tuesday evening once again provides us with a very solid NHL slate. We have nine games on our hands tonight with some very intriguing matchups to sort through. Somewhere in those favorable matchups are value plays that have the ability to put our lineups over the top. I aim to identify those game-changing values below. Let’s get at it!
Valtteri Filppula (PHI): $3,700 vs. BUF
It is clear that the Flyers have plans to make Filppula an integral part of their offense moving forward. He lines up as the Flyers’ second line center in between potent fantasy producers in Brayden Schenn and Jakub Voracek, a role that helped him earn a goal in his Flyers debut while skating an average of over 17 minutes through his first two games in his new digs. Filppula received some power play time while skating over 20 minutes in Washington on Saturday night and will likely see a similar role in Buffalo tonight against a Sabres team that ranks 29th on the penalty kill with a 76.3% mark.
Mark Letestu (EDM): $3,800 vs. NYI
Here is another example of a center that finds himself in a comfy position in a favorable matchup tonight. While Letestu skates as the fourth line center at even strength, he also lines up as the centerman on the top Oilers’ power play unit alongside Connor McDavid and co. Said role on that top unit has helped Letestu tally eight power play goals on the season which accounts for 61.5% of his goal scoring on the campaign. While the Islanders penalty kill isn’t horrific, they do rank 20th in the league in that category while ranking 25th with 2.95 goals against per game. That figure increases to 3.17 on the road so Letestu clearly has a solid opportunity in front of him tonight.
Artturi Lehkonen (MTL): $3,300 vs. VAN
There were several players getting right for the Canadiens on Saturday night at Madison Square Garden. Montreal scored four regulation goals in a game for the first time since February 9th and Lehkonen snapped a 17-game point streak with his game-winning goal. He hadn’t scored a goal since January 21 despite taking 35 shots in that span. Puck luck is going to come back into the rookie’s corner after tallying his 12th goal of the season, especially considering he gets ample opportunities thanks to his positioning on the Canadiens’ second line and second power play unit. He frequently records 2-4 shots per game and has 117 shots on goal this season, so look for the rookie to heat up going down the stretch.
Chris Stewart (MIN): $3,700 vs. STL
Despite receiving mostly fourth line minutes with the Wild this season, Stewart has managed 11 goals on 65 shots. Perhaps that solid bottom-six production is the reason Stewart has been bumped all the way to the top line next to Eric Staal and Zach Parise. He has skated over 13 minutes in each of his last two games after receiving single-digit minutes in seven of his last ten games. The Wild are the league’s third-highest scoring team on home ice at 3.41 goals per game so it’s entirely possible Stewart gets on the board tonight given his enticing spot on the number one line.
Brandon Montour (ANH): $3,000 vs. NSH
There will come a time when we will laugh at the fact Montour was available for the minimum price of $3,000 at FanDuel. He has just the two points through 14 games this season, but he averages 2.14 shots on goal per game and skates on the team’s second power play unit when he does dress. Keep in mind that Anaheim power play ranks 10th on home ice at a solid 20.7% while Montour skates on a unit with Corey Perry and the Ducks’ leading goal scorer in Rickard Rakell. This kid has very high upside as an offensive defenseman as evidenced by his 33 points in 36 AHL games as a 22-year-old rear guard this season.
Jaccob Slavin (CAR): $3,800 vs. COL
Sometimes when searching for value plays we should be looking at players with solid floors, and that is what we have with Slavin. Slavin has emerged as a beast on the Hurricanes’ blueline as he has skated at least 25:32 in each of his last four games, with an assist in each contest. That puts his point total at 23 on the season to go along with 77 shots and 126 blocked shots in 62 games. Those blocked shots and huge minutes should prove fruitful against the Avalanche tonight who are the NHL’s worst team by 16 points while giving up 3.32 goals per game on home ice.
Cam Ward (CAR): $7,800 vs. COL
While precisely zero goalies have been confirmed for tonight’s games as of the time of this writing, Ward seems like a logical value play should he get the nod tonight in Colorado. The reasons are fairly simple. Colorado ranks 30th with 1.92 goals per game this season while ranking 29th with a 13.1% clip with the man advantage. The Hurricanes rank third in the league with an 85.6% figure on the penalty kill which should make things that much more difficult for the Avalanche tonight. Ward doesn’t play his best on the road, however, if you are rolling the dice with cheap goaltending he should certainly be of some consideration this evening.